National Apprenticeship Week8th February 2021
Two of 21’s core values are ‘To Deliver Difference’ (to our employees, community, clients, professional partners and supply chain) and ‘To Keep our Business Evolving’. Reviewing these values over recent months led us to recognise that an apprenticeship scheme would not only be an opportunity to offer development to our people but also to help our community into employment.
While we have taken on interns in the past, we have never had a structured programme to take on apprentices. Once we started contacting local training providers, it became clear that there were many apprentices who had started their apprenticeship journey before the pandemic but had since been made redundant. We realised that this gave us the opportunity to help provide a platform to train an available pool of talent. Not only do we have the means to take on apprentices and offer them the ability to continue their development, but we are also able to provide support to our team, as the demand of our services increases.
In 2019, we had 3 trainees (5% of our workforce), with 1 on a university-funded course, and 5 work experience students during the year. In 2020, we were proud to have grown this pool to 4 trainees, 3 apprentices, and 8 employees on an upskilling apprenticeship, with 2 on a university funded degree – a total of 20% of our workforce.
One trainee who joined us in 2018 was promoted in 2020 and another work experience student from 2019 joined us as a trainee in 2020, showing the success of our internal programme at growing people from within and retaining talent.
One of our apprentices says, “Joining 21 was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I can earn while I learn and gain a respected qualification that will give me opportunities for my future career in business. I am grateful that I’ve been afforded the opportunity to take on challenging tasks and responsibilities whilst also given the necessary tools and guidance to progress in my apprenticeship and be a successful employee.”
We will continue the progress of our apprenticeships and internal development programmes, bringing our success stories to life and creating our own store of extraordinary talent who will be leading the business in the future. We have made an impact on our people, while also making a difference to the London community, by hiring locals and engaging with local training providers.